Saturday, October 29, 2011

Just Do It!

Every once in a while I find myself stuck in a rut. The same old, same old was well...getting old. I needed to do something different, but I didn't know what. Then one lazy afternoon I found myself doing a goal exercise in my SELF magazine, and as it turns out, it was all I needed to get the wheels turning and for me to figure out what I needed to do. 

One odd thing I wrote down was that I wanted to run a 5k. No big deal for all the runners out there, but I was not a runner. At all. In fact, I had always hated running. I preferred getting my heart rate pumping on the Elliptical or in an intense Bootcamp session. But here I was, writing down that I wanted to do a 5k. Weird. 

Next thing you know I am googling Toronto 5k's, and what do you know? There were several planned for the month of October. After running this by my family, I went online and signed up for one. I had exactly one month to train. Once I nailed down the whole breathing part, I was good to go. My one concern was my bad knee, which acted up on a couple of occasions, but I dealt with that just fine...(Advil + bag of frozen Peas).

October 16th, 5k day as I called it, was here. I was a little nervous to be honest. I know 5k is not that big of deal when you have people running full and half marathons on the same day, but it was a big deal to me. Accomplishing my goal was a big deal. I proved to myself that I could run. I proved that I could run a full 5k without walking on and off. Someone I know who was running the half marathon that day told me that this run would be my best ever. She was right. 

Over that one month, I learned to love running. Who knew? I didn't even see that one coming!

Another goal I had written down was to start doing Pilates. The kind in a studio with an instructor and not in my living room like I had done in the past. I always wanted to use the Reformer machines. Now, once a week my mom and I do a semi-private session with our awesome instructor, and we do LOVE the Reformer! 
I'm going to stop writing now and go for a run while I still can! Next up: 10k! 



Saturday, October 8, 2011

Insight Of The Day

Steve Jobs gave this as part of his Commencement Address at Stanford University on June 12, 2005.

Love and Loss

I was lucky. I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parents garage when I was 20. We worked hard, and in 10 years Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a $2 billion company with over 4000 employees. We had just released our finest creation - the Macintosh - a year earlier, and I had just turned 30. And then I got fired. How can you get fired from a company you started?

Well, as Apple grew we hired someone who I thought was very talented to run the company with me, and for the first year or so things went well. But then our visions of the future began to diverge and eventually we had a falling out. When we did, our Board of Directors sided with him. So at 30 I was out. And very publicly out. What had been the focus of my entire adult life was gone, and it was devastating.

I really didn't know what to do for a few months. I felt that I had let the previous generation of entrepreneurs down - that I had dropped the baton as it was being passed to me. I met with David Packard and Bob Noyce and tried to apologize for screwing up so badly. I was a very public failure, and I thought about running away from the valley. But something slowly began to dawn on me - I still loved what I did. The turn of events at Apple had not changed that one bit. I had been rejected, but I was still in love. And so I decided to start over.

I didn't see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.

During the next five years, I started a company named NeXT, another company named Pixar, and fell in love with an amazing woman who would become my wife. Pixar went on to create the worlds first computer animated feature film, Toy Story, and is now the most successful animation studio in the world. In a remarkable turn of events, Apple bought NeXT.

I returned to Apple, and the technology we developed at NeXT is at the heart of Apple's current renaissance. And Laurene and I have a wonderful family together.

I'm pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn't been fired from Apple. It was awful tasting medicine, but I guess the patient needed it. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don't lose faith. I'm convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You've got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers.

Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking.

Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don't settle.

Steve Jobs